CHEERS to businesses that raise a little money from a lot of people for charity.
If you were asked right at this moment to give some of your money to charity, how much would you give?
Would you give $500? $100? $50?
We imagine most readers would probably hesitate before giving that much.
But how about 42 cents?
Far from the pressures of a collection jar, we’ve noticed some businesses trying a new and clever approach to fundraising.
That once a bill is tallied up, the customer is asked if they’d like to round their total up to the nearest dollar and donate the difference to a cause.
As with asking if a customer would like to “give a dollar” while checking out, we cheer this idea that you don’t have to give a lot to make a big difference.
From GoFundMe online fundraisers to roadway bucket collections to the famed Salvation Army Red Kettles of Christmastime, our heart- and purse-strings are tugged in a hundred directions each year.
But those “give what you can” causes, while wonderful in their missions, come with a certain level of guilt that might keep wallets closed.
For better or worse, most people don’t want to be the ones who toss pocket change into the bucket when the person ahead of them just dropped in a $10 bill.
But that’s where the brilliance of the rounding-up approach comes in.
That it celebrates the idea that if everyone at a restaurant or checkout line were to clean the change from their couch and turn that in, the results would be stupendous.
A recent research paper backs this idea up.
The paper, “Would You Like to Round Up and Donate the Difference? Roundup Requests Reduce the Perceived Pain of Donating,” was published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.
Researchers found that a nonprofit zoo increased their fundraising profits by 21 percent when framed as rounding up the bill versus asking if patrons would like to give a dollar.
Nearly a quarter rise in total donations is nothing to scoff at.
Again, we also cheer the dollar approach as showing the value of a little giving going a long way.
But we would encourage more local businesses to consider using the round-up method when fundraising.
Let’s see what change that change could make in the world.